On January 13, we celebrate Korean American Day to honor and highlight our friends of Korean descent who have made immeasurable contributions as small business owners, military service members, faith leaders, doctors, artists, and elected officials for over a century ever since the first immigration wave happened way back in 1903. Korean American Day is celebrated annually on January 13.
History of Korean American Day
It was in 1903 that just over 100 Koreans first arrived in the United States. That number quickly grew; within two years, 7,500 Korean immigrants had made the same journey. In the years that have passed, Korean-Americans have made a valuable contribution to society, and it’s on Korean American day that we honor and celebrate their contribution.
There has been a lot to celebrate for Korean Americans over the past century or so. Sammy Lee was a two-time Olympic gold medalist in diving, Wendy Gramm served as U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission chair under Presidents Reagan and Bush, David Hyun was the architect who revitalized Little Tokyo in L.A., and Hines Ward Jr played for the Pittsburgh Steelers.
As well as the impact on individuals, Korean culture, in general, has left a sizable footprint in the U.S. Korean food has become incredibly popular, and going for bibimbap with a side of kimchi is now commonplace, as is listening to a few K-Pop tunes on the drive home. Among the more Korean Americans
In 2005, the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives passed the resolution to consent to what Korean American Day stands for and its aspirations. As a result, Korean American Day is now enjoyed each year on January 13, which is the perfect excuse to snack on some kimchi.
Korean American Day Timeline
President George W. Bush establishes Korean American Day.
First Korean American Congressman
Jay Kim is elected as a U.S. House of Representatives Congressman for California’s 41st district.
June 27, 1952
The Act is passed
The McCarran and Walter Act is passed, eliminating the Asian immigration ban and making Asian immigrants eligible for citizenship.
January 13, 1903
The first Korean immigrants to the U.S. arrived and permanently settled in Hawaii.
Traditions For Korean American Day
Korean Americans, this is your day! Celebrate the unique Korean culture and traditions that have made a place in the heart of U.S. culture. Today is a great day to delve into Korean Americans’ rich and diverse history. Learn more about them, watch Korean-centered entertainment, and enjoy all the great Korean food.
Korean American Day Faqs
When is Korean American Day?
What can I do to celebrate Korean American Day?
You can order takeout from your local Korean food joints, listen to some K-Pop, or watch a Korean movie.
What are some Korean American achievements?
Korean Americans have had many success stories: The invention of the first beating heart operation for coronary artery heart disease, the development of the nectarine, a 4-time Olympic gold medalist, and achievements in engineering, architecture, medicine, acting, singing, sculpture, and writing.
Korean American Day Activities
- Learn about notable Korean Americans
- Learn more about Korean Americans then and now. Read books about their experiences or watch documentaries available all around the Internet.
- Look up their history
- You can visit Korean American Story to hear their stories or document your own. Find out more or share your experience using #KoreanAmericanDay on social media.
- Enjoy their culture
- Look up concerts, music, restaurants, events, and plenty more cultural hotspots organized to honor Korean Americans.
5 Facts About Korea
- The world leader in Internet
- Ninety-two percent of South Korea’s population are internet users and boast the world’s fastest average connection speed.
- Taekwondo was created in Korea
- It’s believed to have been invented approximately 2,000 years ago.
- It has the world’s first astronomical lab
- Cheomseongdae Observatory in South Korea was built in the mid-600s.
- A special browser for banks
- It is law in South Korea that online banking must be done through Internet Explorer.
- South Korea had the biggest economic turnaround
- South Korea was one of the poorest countries in the 50s, but within 20 years, it turned into one of the richest nations.
Why We Love Korean American Day
- It’s good to enjoy different cultures
- Experiencing new cultures opens your mind and is great fun. Korean culture is rich, and there is plenty for you to explore. Go deep, learn, and have fun.
- Korean food is great
- If you’ve not yet realized how good Korean food is, you have some catching up. Our advice is to visit your local Korean restaurant and try a selection of items from the menu.
- It helps us reconnect with our Korean friends
- If you know any Korean Americans, make an extra effort to connect with them today. Grab a bite to eat with them or send them a message.